As smartphone and tablet use become more and more pervasive, the value of mobile applications is becoming increasingly clear to business owners. As social media use continues to rise seemingly exponentially, consumers are becoming more open to engaging with brands on a day to day or even minute to minute basis. Business owners and marketers can capitalize on the consumers’ desires for engagement by producing entertaining and functional mobile applications.
A recent review by a notable business-to-business research company suggested that only 25% of businesses are currently utilizing a mobile application. Though current utilization of mobile apps in businesses is relatively low, the review suggested that many companies have plans to have a working mobile application by 2017.
There are three predominant reasons why business owners have decided to develop their applications:
Improve Sales: More than half of review respondents indicated that the primary function of their app was to increase sales. Mobile applications
can streamline the browsing, shopping and checkout processes, which often yields an increase in sales.
Improve the Customer Experience: Most business owners want their products and services to be accessible, and a mobile application enables seamless access to products and services with the touch of a button. If the mobile application is engaging and easy to use, it will improve the customer’s overall experience with the business which will translate to more purchases and yield greater sales.
Compete in a Specific Market: The business market is exceedingly competitive, and in order for businesses to stay relevant they need to adapt to market changes. As mobile device use becomes more prevalent, businesses must begin to explore the benefits that mobile technology can have on their bottom line.
The review found that the following elements are the most important to include in business applications:
Customer Loyalty (features that reward customers who have demonstrated loyalty to the company).
Social Networking (connecting customers to other mobile platforms that feature information about the company).
Push Notifications (allowing business to push important news and updates to their end users). Personalization (customizing the experience of the individual end user).
It would behoove the business owner to consider creating a mobile application now to meet the increasing demand for seamless, one touch access to products and services.